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Today's Magic Number: Gary Sheffield

CHICAGO - AUGUST 28: Gary Sheffield #10 of the New York Mets strikes out to end a game against the Chicago Cubs on August 28, 2009 at Wrigley Field in Chicago, Illinois. The Cubs defeated the Mets 5-2.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Ryan MaloneyContributor IISeptember 17, 2009

Former Deadspin editor Will Leitch has come up with an admirable way to pay tribute to the former players of his favorite franchise while avoiding a jinx on their chance at a division crown.

The St. Louis Cardinals hold a 9.5 game lead over the Cubs in the NL Central. With 18 games remaining in the season, that puts their magic number at 11.

Rather than stating his team's daily number, Leitch substitutes the name of a former Cards player who wore that day's magic number on his uniform. I am stealing this idea.

Five facts about Gary Sheffield:

  1. He's all the way black.
  2. He grew up living with his uncle, Dwight "Doc" Gooden, who is just four years Sheffield's senior.
  3. He played in the Little League World Series when he was 11. Taiwan beat Sheffield's squad 4-3 in the finals.
  4. He hit 15 home runs in just 62 official at bats in his senior year of high school, and was named Gatorade National Player of the Year.
  5. He's probably not the biggest fan of R. Kelly.

11: Gary Sheffield
10: Phil Rizzuto
9: Roger Maris
8: Yogi Berra
7: Mickey Mantle
6: Steve Sax
5: Joe DiMaggio
4: Lou Gehrig
3: Babe Ruth
2: Mike Gallego
1: Bobby Murcer

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